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Community development initiatives can come in all shapes and sizes. The ones featured here, however, meld business with benefit; they're hybrid organizations that re-think the way community development is traditionally done, that is, either through the government or through non-profit organizations and charities.

This Social Business top list features everything from a travel company that is all about the triple bottom line to energy drinks that fund development in the less-industrialized world. Many of these community development initiatives have an international outlook, but a few look to their more local community in order to promote self-development that fosters alliance between people who live, work and play in the same community that they do.

The most popular have been fair trade products that employ marginalized individuals and also support programs regarding poverty reduction, health and education.